Big 10 Network hockey analyst Fred Pletsch previews Michigan at Minnesota, breaks down the conference race

The former CCHA and NAHL commissioner also talks about his career in hockey on The Rink Live podcast with Jess Myers and Mick Hatten.

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The Rink Live

Big Ten Network analyst Fred Pletsch has worn many hats over the course of a distinguished career, including serving as commissioner of both the North American Hockey League and the original incarnation of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association.

In a conversation with The Rink Live, he offered some thoughts on the weekend's showdown between Minnesota and Michigan, as well as the other contenders for the 2023 conference title.



1:45 A preview look at this weekend's series: Michigan at Minnesota

3:40 Why is Michigan in sixth place in the Big Ten?


7:00 Who is Michigan interim coach Brandon Naurato and what is his coaching style?

11:45 What are the surprises in the Big Ten so far this season?

15:45 Being the commissioner of the NAHL and the CCHA

20:15 Story on one of his toughest spots as a commissioner

22:50 How the NAHL has changed since he was commissioner, the end of the original CCHA, why Penn State getting hockey changed college hockey

27:45 A health update on his son

28:30 Penn State being strong in goal with Liam Souliere helping the Nittany Lions to a strong season

31:15 Is Arizona State a good fit for the Big 10?


33:45 How the conference champion gets a bye in the Big 10 ... has it helped those teams in the postseason?

Mick Hatten is a reporter and editor for Forum News Service and helps manage, a website dedicated to hockey. He began working for Forum Communications in November 2018 and has covered St. Cloud State University hockey since 2010. A graduate of St. Cloud State, he has more than 30 years of experience as a journalist and has been a youth hockey coach since 2014.
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